If you're interested in an icy dessert on your next trip to your local Japanese convenience store, you can soon look forward to umeshu-flavored gelato.
The tubular iced treats offered by Ezaki Glico's Papico brand are normally coveted by the younger set for their fun form factor and kid-friendly flavors, but recently they've been pushing decidedly more grown-up offerings, such as their PapiVege lineup designed for adults to supplement their vegetable intake.
Their latest Papico is flavored with umeshu 梅酒, or Japanese plum wine. Not exactly a kid's flavor, umeshu is a popular drink in Japan, especially for those who don't like hard liquor and prefer their alcohol on the sweet side.
With an image of an umeshu glass and bold lettering on a dark blue background with blurred light spots, and the words "contains plum wine" at the bottom, there's no mistaking the target audience. The name 大人の梅ジェラート otona no ume gelato, meaning "grown-up plum gelato" says it all.
Although it's Papico's first foray into spiked treats in the brand's 45 year history, you're not exactly going to get a buzz from this, since it only has 0.6% alcohol. Nevertheless, it's not recommended for small children, nursing or pregnant women, or those who are intolerant of alcohol.
Made with the juice and puree of choice Nanko plums from the famous Kishu plum-growing region of Honshu (Wakayama Prefecture and southern Mie Prefecture), the Otona no ume gelato Papico have a rich umeshu taste and a rich smoothy-like texture.
They cost 180 yen for a pack of two tubes.
You'll find them in the ice cream section at convenience stores, supermarkets and grocery stores throughout Japan, while supplies last.
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